Savor: Savoring Each Day

Spices 1

By +Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

How do I walk out my days? Do I savor them? Or do I rush each moment, perhaps sprinkling a wee bit of salt on them, but coming to bedtime bland?

I have fallen into the trap that prompts me to believe busy-ness equals value. Busy-ness equals productivity. Busy-ness equals worth.

It’s easy to rush through my days. From the moment my husband awakens me to the moment we say good-night, every moment is filled. And it’s not always with the good things, the savory things of life.

Clock on shelf

Instead, I have appointments, activities and to-do’s that push me from one moment to the next, with no time to really think about—to savor—what may have just happened. When I’m in that busy-mode, my time with my boys is shallow. One of them may come to me, “Mom, I need to talk to you about my day.”

“Not how, honey. I have to get dinner ready so we can get to karate.”

And the boy walks away, his shoulders, stooped.

Wall and Wheel

And I missed a moment of savoring fellowship with this son who is quickly growing toward manhood. What do my “No’s” teach him? That the activity is more important than the heart? More important than him in my list of priorities?

Sure, he doesn’t understand all that needs to happen to keep our family functioning. If “Not now” is too often in my vocabulary, the family will cease to function. No matter how hard I push to make sure we get to their activities on time. No matter how many to-do’s get crossed off my daily list.

Hands held 1

I miss out on those moments of savoring—treasuring—moments with our boys. They are numbered. And that number grows smaller by the day.

When I am busy about life, bustling from one calendar event to the next, not checking in with God, I will miss savoring moments in my days.

To really savor my life, I need heed God’s call, “Come to Me.” He desires relationship with us.

Red lights

It’s only when I seek out relationship with my Father, that I can be attuned to authentic relationship with my family. When that boy asks, “Mom, can we talk?” I need to be ready—as often as possible—to stop what I’m doing, slow life down and just sit with him. I’ve found, when I do this, these sons give me glimpses into their hearts, their worries, the things that bring them joy. And those moments knit our hearts together.

And I love being knit together with my three guys.

Mom walking with child

This only happens when my life isn’t going at mach ten 24/7. I need moments of stillness with my Father first. It’s only when I am intimate with Him that I can be sensitive to those savoring moments He wants to place in my day with my family. And with those in my circle.

Walking out each day in a way that gives me opportunities to savor them requires me saying no to the good so I can say yes to the best. In His best is where I want to live.

Savory salad

I can only live in this place if I’m not striving for affirmation, value, worth through busy-ness. When I say yes only to the things God gives me the okay for, then I can live a savoring life, not a too-busy-but-bland life. I can taste the garlic, the basil, the thyme sprinkled into my days . . . and I can be enriched by them.

What about you? How do you savor your days? How do you keep yourself from becoming too busy to really savor relationships?

P.S. This guest post by Shauna Niequist  on Ann Voskamp’s blog really got me thinking about this subject.

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6 thoughts on “Savor: Savoring Each Day

  1. It’s a hard balance, isn’t it. One daughter will say she needs to tell me … I tell her to hold her thought till we reach the car, and tell me on the way to where ever it is we are going. I’ve been reading a lot lately, and I know that is occupying too much of my time, probably. Well, no probably. But … at least the girls read, too … and we’ll share our favorite parts. I think we savor the most valuables when we go on walks together … nothing to distract us, other than nature.

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    • Shelli, I’ve done that “Tell me in a minute!” too. My guys, whose minds move very fast, usually forget when I’m ready to listen. There is that balance, like you said of stopping and listening. But also of teaching them to wait.

      I admit it. I’m the tiniest bit jealous that you’ve had time to read. 🙂 My time has been minimal lately. 🙂 But my boys LOVE reading. I say one of them is addicted to the written word, and it’s not an exaggeration. 🙂 You’re fortunate to live in a place where you’re surrounded by nature, and you can go walk in it.

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  2. As a mom of three who vividly remembers those oh-so-busy days I will offer encouragement that you’re very wise to realize the need to savor these moments. 🙂 I am absolutely amazed at how quickly the years have flown, and now I have an “empty nest” and will admit I MISS my kiddos not being here at home—even as crazy and hectic as those times could be, I wouldn’t trade those years for anything. So I always encourage moms who still have children at home to do exactly as you’ve written in your post. Savor those moments with the Lord first, then family. Slow down—even if it means allowing some activities to wait. 🙂
    Thank you for sharing your heart, Jeanne. I’m sure you are a wonderful mom to your precious sons!
    Blessings, Patti Jo
    P.S. I guess I’m feeling “super nostalgic” right now, because as I type this note my “baby boy” is in an airplane bound for Pittsburgh, where he’ll attend an Open House before making up his mind about Graduate school. If only Georgia and Pennsylvania were closer. *sigh*

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    • Awww, Patti Jo. Thank you so much for stopping here in my corner of the internet!The years do fly by. My oldest enters junior high next year, and it’s amazing to me to realize he’s only got a few more years with us before he flies the coop, so to speak.

      It is hard to set some of my activities aside sometimes, but I know it’s worthwhile. My hope is that the relational time we’re building now will help us navigate the turbulent teen years. Keeping an open door to communication. Activities will wait. Kids don’t. They keep growing older, whether or not we’re involved.

      I hope your “baby” has a great time, and gets clear direction on choosing graduate school. That’s hard for me to imagine at this point. 🙂

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  3. The other day Bea said, “You need to come outside and play because you’re my mommy!” Not in a demanding way, but as an invitation. And I realized I do! The point of my days right now is to be her mommy. It’s hard to remember when it’s so easy to prioritize other necessities, but I’m learning to stop and just be with her. Thanks for the reminder to savor these moments!

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    • Good for you, Annie. Purposing to be outside and play with Bea! It is an invitation. And if we say “no” enough, they stop asking. Enjoy the days when it’s just the two of you. It’s hard when other kiddos come along. 🙂

      Savor, savor, savor. 🙂

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